College basketball: Defensive lapses costly for Oilers

By BRIAN LESTER
STAFF WRITER
NORTH CANTON — Right down until the very end, the University of Findlay women’s basketball team battled Walsh University in a road game it needed to win.
But ultimately, the Oilers couldn’t make the plays they needed offensively or get the stops they needed against the Cavaliers and the end result was an 86-83 loss on Thursday night that all but eliminates the Oilers from contention for a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference tournament berth.
“The frustrating thing was our defense,” UF head coach Jim Wiedie said. “It really comes down to getting stops in critical situations and we couldn’t do that when we needed to.”
The Oilers (11-13, 8-12 GLIAC) led 74-71 with 4:54 remaining after Margaret Wuebker nailed a jumper.
But a 3-pointer with 2:11 to go by Maggie Berry put the Cavaliers ahead to stay at 78-76. It was one of 10 treys on the night by the Cavaliers. The Oilers continued to battle and were down just 85-83 with six seconds left after Karli Beasley sliced into the lane on a layup.
The Oilers, though, were unable to make a play at the end and the Cavaliers (10-15, 6-13) hung on to earn a split in the season series.
One of the most crucial plays in the final minute was the inability of the Oilers to come up with a rebound on a missed free throw when they only trailed 83-81.
Jaylynn Graham grabbed the board and it led to two more free throws by Kelsey Funderburgh and an 85-81 lead.
“We gave up that rebound on a big miss, and we work on getting those rebounds every day in practice,” Wieidie said. “It changed the last 15 seconds of the game. If we get it, maybe it’s a different story.”
The Oilers were outrebounded 56-31. The total included 20 offensive rebounds. WU also shot 41.9 percent (31-of-74) from the field and had four players in double figures, including 21 from Funderburgh.
Berry clicked for 17 points, Tara Gallupe scored 16 and Rachael Trujillo finished with 14. The Cavaliers won despite turning the ball over 18 times.
“You can’t give up 86 points on the road and expect to win,” Wiedie said. “The amazing thing is despite being outrebounded and giving up that many points, we only lose by three. It’s a different game if we take away a few of those rebounds or get a few more stops.”
The Oilers shot 42.4 percent (28-of-66) from the field and four players scored in double figures. Nikki Gunning scored 17 points and Wuebker finished with 15. Geiger scored 13 points and Karli Bonar finished with 11 points.
UF trailed 46-44 at the half as the two teams went back-and-forth. The second half was more of the same.
Now, UF heads home to take on Malone (18-8, 13-7) Saturday afternoon for senior day in a 1 p.m. game at Croy Gymnasium. The Oilers have two games remaining.
“We need to focus on trying to finish strong,” Wiedie said. “We won’t accomplish the goals we wanted to, but we can still finish the year on a positive note.”

FINDLAY (11-13, 8-12 GLIAC)
Wuebker 55-8 5-6 15, Beasley 3-8 1-2 7, Gunning 6-13 2-2 17, Geiger 5-17 2-5 13, Bonar 3-7 2-2 11, Kenny 2-3 0-0 4, Andrews 1-2 5-8 8, Klausing 0-1 0-0 0, Kessler 2-5 0-0 6, Lewis 1-1 0-0 2. TOTALS: 28-66 17-25–83.
WALSH (10-15, 6-13 GLIAC)
Trujillo 6-12 0-0 14, Funderburgh 5-16 7-9 21, Berry 6-14 2-2 17, Jones 2-5 0-0 4, Gallupe 7-12 2-2 16, Graham 1-7 1-1 3, Badovick 2-4 0-0 5, Dabbelt 2-4 2-2 6. TOTALS: 31-74 14-16–86.
3-Point GOALS: Findlay 10-29 (Beasley 0-1, Gunning 3-8, Geiger 1-8, Bonar 3-7, Andrews 1-2, Kessler 2-3); Walsh 10-36 (Trujillo 2-8, Funderburgh 4-12, Berry 3-10, Graham 0-3, Badovic 1-3).
HALFTIME: Walsh, 46-44.
rebounds: Walsh 56 (Dabbelt 11, Funderburgh 9); Findlay 31 (Wuebker 9, Geiger 8).
ASSISTS: Walsh 22 (Trujillo, Funderburgh, Graham & Dabbbelt 4); Findlay 13 (Beasley 5).
STEALS: Findlay 5 (Kessler 2); Walsh 2.
BLOCKS: Walsh 3 (Gallupe 2); Findlay 1
TURNOVERS: Walsh 18, Findlay 8.
TOTAL FOULS: Walsh 15, Findlay 8
FOULED OUT: None.
Lester, 419-427-8409
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